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Player of the Match
Player of the Match

Abbott hastens South Africa's crushing win

South Africa 286 (Duminy 63, Elgar 59, Lakmal 5-63) and 406 for 6 dec (Cook 117, de Kock 69, du Plessis 67*, Elgar 52) beat Sri Lanka 205 (Philander 5-45) and 281 (Mathews 59, Mendis 58, Rabada 3-77, Maharaj 3-86) by 206 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

South Africa made full use of the second new ball to rip through Sri Lanka's last five wickets and complete a 206-run win in Port Elizabeth, an hour and 10 minutes into day five. Once Kyle Abbott broke through early to dismiss Angelo Mathews and Dhananjaya de Silva, there was little Sri Lanka's lower order could do. The margin of Sri Lanka's defeat belied how comfortable their top-order batsmen had looked on day four, and reflected how so many of them had thrown their wickets away.

Chasing 488, Sri Lanka started the final day 248 adrift with five wickets in hand and their last two recognised batsmen at the crease, one of them batting on 58. That man, Mathews, had added only one run to his score when Abbott nipped one in sharply and had a loud lbw shout upheld. Mathews had taken guard on off stump right through the Test match, and this probably played a major role in his dismissal. Jumping back and across, Mathews had to open up to access the ball that was jagging back into the stumps, and before his bat could come across to meet it, the ball had struck his retreating front pad, right in front. He reviewed more in desperation than hope.

A near-replay, down to the failed review, sent de Silva on his way 3.5 overs later. Again the batsman was standing on off stump, and again was forced to play across the line. Again the review returned an umpire's call verdict on height.

In between, Abbott had also dealt Rangana Herath a blow with a sharp lifter that struck him on the bottom hand. Having strapped up his fingers, Herath lasted a further nine balls before Vernon Philander had him caught and bowled, diving across the pitch to catch it low to his left, landing painfully on his arm, after getting the ball to stop on the batsman.

Kagiso Rabada got into the act next, finding away seam movement and extra bounce in the corridor to catch the shoulder of Dushmantha Chameera's bat. The last wicket went to Keshav Maharaj, who finished with a three-wicket haul that was reward for some skillful, tight bowling while getting through 29 overs on day four. He only needed to bowl nine balls on day five, the ninth an absolute ripper, turning past the outside edge of Nuwan Pradeep's defensive bat to knock back off stump.

Fifty stand at last

16.25

SA's average opening stand in Port Elizabeth in their 12 previous Test innings from 2001. Their highest opening partnership in this period was 47

A long time coming

1970

The last time South Africa had a century stand for the first wicket here in Tests, before today: Eddie Barlow and Barry Richards added 157 v Australia

Amla's dip in form

49.92

Hashim Amla's career average; he needs to score 62 (if dismissed) in the 2nd innings to bring his average back up to 50

Getting starts, getting out

5

Instances of South Africa's top five all being dismissed between 20 and 65 in a Test innings. This is only the third such instance since their readmission

Maiden five-for

0

No. of five-wicket hauls by Suranga Lakmal before this. He is playing his 32nd Test.

bowlers' session

7/56

Score in the 1st session on the 2nd day of the Test at Port Elizabeth. Only six wickets fell on the 1st day and 267 runs were made.

Favourite Team

17.34

Philander's average versus Sri Lanka in Tests. 2nd best against any team.He now has 3 five wicket hauls against SL, Aus and NZ.

Opening Salvo

1970

Last instance of the opening stand having 2 50+ run stands in a Test Match for RSA at Port Elizabeth. Barry Richards and Eddie Barlow added 157 and 73 against Aus

Rare Feat

1

Instances of the same opening pair for RSA before Elgar and Cook to have 2 100+ run stands in both innings of a Test.Bob Catteral and Bruce Mitchell did so in 1929

Starting Strong

3

Number of centuries scored by Stephen Cook this year - Highest for any player from South Africa. Amla, Du Plessis and De Kock have 2 hundreds each.

Tough ask

410

Most runs scored by SL in the 4th inn of a Test. This was scored against Aus at Hobart in 2007. Their highest 4th inn score in SA is 306.They need 488 to win.

Fourth Innings Hero

69.75

Mathews' average in 4th inns of Tests. Only Bruce Mitchell, Jeffrey Stollmeyer and Bradman average higher (min 500 runs)